Yemen’s Houthi Rebels Seize Cargo Vessel In Red Sea, IDF Says ‘Not An Israeli Ship’

The Israeli military informed on Sunday that Yemen’s Houthi rebels seized a cargo ship in the southern Red Sea as it sailed from Türkiye to India, describing the incident as “a very grave incident on a global level.” The military clarified that the unnamed vessel was not Israeli-owned, and no Israelis were part of its crew. “The hijacking of a cargo ship by the Houthis near Yemen in the southern Red Sea is a very grave incident of global consequence. The ship departed Turkey on its way to India, staffed by civilians of various nationalities, not including Israelis. It is not an Israeli ship,” the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) posted on X.

The Israeli Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) stated that the Netanyahu government condemned what it termed as “Iranian attack against an international vessel”.

“Israel strongly condemns the Iranian attack against an international vessel.  The ship, which is owned by a British company and is operated by a Japanese firm, was hijacked with Iran guidance by the Yemenite Houthi militia,” it stated on X.

Earlier, Arab media had reported that an Israeli ship named “Galaxy Leader,” owned by businessman Rami Unger, was hijacked by the Houthi rebels. The cargo ship, carrying vehicles, had 22 crew members. The ship, flying the flag of the Bahamas, left a Turkish port for India, the Jerusalem Post reported.

Yahya Sarea, a spokesperson for the Iran-aligned Houthi military, announced the group’s intention to target ships owned or operated by Israeli companies or flying the Israeli flag, according to a report by the Jerusalem Post. Sarea called for countries worldwide to withdraw their citizens from crews working on such ships.

The Houthi rebels, according to a Houthi-linked news network, declared, that the group “will target all types of ships that carry the flag of the Zionist entity or are operated by or owned by Israeli companies, calling on all countries of the world to withdraw their citizens working on the crews of the enemy entity’s ships, and to avoid shipping on them”, the report mentioned.

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